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Sennheiser HD 800 Over-Ear Circum-Aural Dynamic Headphone by Review Summary ,  Sep 12, 2015

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Sennheiser HD 800 Over-Ear Circum-Aural Dynamic Headphone
Report Date: 01/03/2016
Based on 126 customer reviews
Overall satisfaction: 4.6
Returned or considering to return: 11.1%

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Frequently Mentioned by Customers:


Individual Feature Rating
Quality4.6   above average
Headphone4.5   above average
Music4.5   average
Listening4.4   average
Cable4.3   above average
Sound4.3   average
Headset4.2   average
Price4.1   average
Audio3.7   below average


Quotes from the Reviews - What People Say about:

Audio

Audio:
"I don't know, maybe I need a 1k+ dollar amp for them to sound right, and a neck brace to both support their weight and keep my head perfectly still so the head phones don't slide and the jacks don't briefly lose contact, but just having them on my head as is has proved to be a very uncomfortable, very sub-optimal audio, experience which makes me very sad considering the 1.5k or whatever it was I dropped on these..."
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"But I would rather have that than compromise on comfort and audio quality."
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"The downside is that the audio is clearly audible by others in the same silent room."
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"I got a set of Sennheiser HD600 headphones a long time ago, and it's sort of what led to the creation of Monkey's Audio because suddenly my MP3 files didn't sound so great."
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"But I would rather have that than compromise on comfort and audio quality."
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"I was able to finally appreciate the huge high quality audio library available both with Spotify and Qobuz."
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"Suddenly you get an amazing music library with amazing audio quality."
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"I went for a cheaper tube amp (Woo Audio WA7) and really liked the sound."
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"Just find a good audio system to match their qualities and enjoy the music! "
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Cable

Cable:
"Good sound but I expected more for the price, headband started popping off occasionally after 3 months not a big deal just annoying then cable broke after 9 months right where the the connecter meets the cable on the left ear side so now makes popping sounds if I move it, $300 for a replacement cable."
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")RATINGS:*Overall sound quality: 10 10*Three dimensionality: 9 10*Accuracy: 10 10*Distortion: 10 10*Definition detail: 10 10*Realism: 9 10*Treble proportionality: 9 10*Midrange proportionality: 10 10*Bass proportionality 9 10 (no model has ever gotten a 10 10)*Noise from cable movements: 10 10*Overall comfort: 10 10*Adjustment ease: 10 10*Temperature stability heat build up: 8 10 (4 10 if hot humid)*Softness of pads: 9 10*Adherence to head: 10 10 (you practically need the jaws-of-life to get them to fall off)*Value: 10 10*Inclusiveness: 4 10 (you need to buy a $99 Schiit Magni headphone amp for best sound at low volume -- but a more powerful amp for higher volumes -- and a $15 Grado mini adapter for use with portables)*Power hungriness: 3 10 (you WILL need to buy a headphone amp, but the $99 Schiit Magni or $169 Vali 2 are at least 90% as good as any at any price for these h-phones for most lower-volume uses, so do NOT fall into the price is proportional to quality trap set by blue collar know-nothings and manufacturer shills trolls by buying far costlier yet similar sounding equipment)*Prestige: 10 10*Resale value: 10 10 (if you buy these new for under $900, as I did, you can resell them for that on Ebay."
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"I have Hd 800 for a year now and they are a super headphone only with a good source i used the naim cdx2 and the xps2 with a lehmann audio linear headphone amp,I also use the atlas mavros rca rca and i do find the headphone a bit bright but i think this is just the stock cable as it is copper.. plated with sliver which will make any headphone bright,so i will probably go with the cardas clear or the moon Black Dragon v2 upgrade cable"
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"I am such a fan because my oldest Sennheiser product, HD590, is still aurally perfect after 3 cable transplants, 2 headband cushion replacements, and an ear piece surgery."
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"The cable connectors are very well designed for a stock cable and reeks of quality."
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Comfortable

Comfortable:
"But I would rather have that than compromise on comfort and audio quality."
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"The headset is really comfortable, my ears fit inside comfortably and they don't get hot or sweaty."
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"The HD 800 have very high build quality & very good fit with high level of comfort."
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"I could not depart from them though as they still sound exceptional, are very comfortable and exhibit very wide and natural stage."
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"The comfort is exceptional as well."
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"But the bass is there, the headphones are extremely comfortable (read: not painful) and might be the last pair I'll ever buy.2) Because of it's revealing nature you'll need high quality mp3's and lossless tracks."
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Headphone

Headphone:
"Coincidentally my AKG and Oppo headphones do not sound as good with the Luxman as they do with my Oppo HA-1.With the right amp pairing these headphones are absolutely amazing."
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"No headphone is as good as a nice set of loudspeakers but these are as close as I have found."
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"Senneheisers goal when creating this masterpiece was to eliminate compromise and re-invent the core foundation of the headphone listening experience."
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"really weird to hear low bass notes with headphones (no phony 60 cycle harmonics hiding real note)JRF"
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"I feel there is still better sound in the realms of electrostatic, and possibly planar technology, but it's hard to best a headphone this perfect."
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"The 600's however are really good and WAY better than this iteration; probably the best headphones on the market (caveat: I have not listened to the Stax)."
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")RATINGS:*Overall sound quality: 10 10*Three dimensionality: 9 10*Accuracy: 10 10*Distortion: 10 10*Definition detail: 10 10*Realism: 9 10*Treble proportionality: 9 10*Midrange proportionality: 10 10*Bass proportionality 9 10 (no model has ever gotten a 10 10)*Noise from cable movements: 10 10*Overall comfort: 10 10*Adjustment ease: 10 10*Temperature stability heat build up: 8 10 (4 10 if hot humid)*Softness of pads: 9 10*Adherence to head: 10 10 (you practically need the jaws-of-life to get them to fall off)*Value: 10 10*Inclusiveness: 4 10 (you need to buy a $99 Schiit Magni headphone amp for best sound at low volume -- but a more powerful amp for higher volumes -- and a $15 Grado mini adapter for use with portables)*Power hungriness: 3 10 (you WILL need to buy a headphone amp, but the $99 Schiit Magni or $169 Vali 2 are at least 90% as good as any at any price for these h-phones for most lower-volume uses, so do NOT fall into the price is proportional to quality trap set by blue collar know-nothings and manufacturer shills trolls by buying far costlier yet similar sounding equipment)*Prestige: 10 10*Resale value: 10 10 (if you buy these new for under $900, as I did, you can resell them for that on Ebay."
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"But I amass beautiful, prestigious headphones as a hobby, from the underrated Grado SR80's all the way up to these gorgeous Sennheiser HD800's, simply the best sounding headphone ever made (which is why as a matter of principle I will not spend a cent over their $1,600 retail for any other model.)"
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"I have tried half a dozen headphones in the $300 price range, and the difference between any of those and the HD 800s is quite clear."
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"These are superb headphones well worth the high price."
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Headset

Headset:
"If you never install those softwares, these gaming headsets may not perform that well."
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"My previous headset was the Senneheiser HD 650 which sounded good but like all other high-quality Sennheiser headsets, which completely surround your ears, I found the HD 595 and the HD 650 to be uncomfortable after about 20 minutes."
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"The headset is really comfortable, my ears fit inside comfortably and they don't get hot or sweaty."
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"To really take advantage of the headset and the amp, you need to run a streaming client that can load a WASAPI driver or ideally the ASIO driver."
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"Gaming headsets usually come with good drivers and softwares enabling players to distinguish enemies' s positions, approach, distance from you, weapons etc.."
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"I compared HD800 with my gaming headset (Creative Tactic 3D sigma, with its good driver and software), without the help of any softwares, HD800 still performed as well as Creative in terms of positioning (couldn't believe), and outperformed Creative in all other fields (of course)."
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"I knew this is a high-end headphone (for consumer market), but I never expected it to perform as well as those headsets specialized in gaming."
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Listening

Listening:
"They will show any weakness in your system or the recording you are listening to."
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"Senneheisers goal when creating this masterpiece was to eliminate compromise and re-invent the core foundation of the headphone listening experience."
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"I enjoy all sorts of music and they are simply outstanding, whether I'm listening to quiet music with lots of hidden detail, the rawness of blues, or loud rock and roll, they just reproduce everything that I throw at them with excellent fullness and detail."
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"Sure they're expensive, but if you really love listening to music, these will present your music to you as never before."
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"These are best used for just sitting by your stereo and listening."
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"I enjoy all sorts of music and they are simply outstanding, whether I'm listening to quiet music with lots of hidden detail, the rawness of blues, or loud rock and roll, they just reproduce everything that I throw at them with excellent fullness and detail."
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"That being said the open back style can be a better indication as to what the sounds would be like if you were in the room thus making them effective for editing and or listening to music with acoustic instruments in my humble opinion."
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"I have been listening to the album for month and enjoying it tremendously, unknowingly that mixing was done on the HD800.I was reading the very interesting liner notes on the Sound Liaison site, when I noticed at the bottom of the equipment list that mixing was done on the HD800.No wonder the download sounds so good on my pair."
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Music

Music:
"You will experience music like never before and please don't let price stop you from enjoying good music."
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"I enjoy all sorts of music and they are simply outstanding, whether I'm listening to quiet music with lots of hidden detail, the rawness of blues, or loud rock and roll, they just reproduce everything that I throw at them with excellent fullness and detail."
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"However in real life most music is not perfect (even flac files) , and the Sennies just emphasize any imperfection."
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"It is just hard to believe how good music can sound through these."
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"It's hard to describe a piece of gear which, upon first listen, sounds different than anything you've heard, yet sounds so completely effortless and musical that you're left with the singular impression that the previous way you've listened to music is somehow incomplete, a wrong path if you will, and that this is clearly a better way."
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"Sure they're expensive, but if you really love listening to music, these will present your music to you as never before."
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"If you love GOOD music, these are the one to buy."
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"Suddenly you get an amazing music library with amazing audio quality."
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"Beware, you will be looking for the best recorded mastered versions of your favorite music and that can get expensive."
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Power

Power:
"You don't just get this level of detail and balance of sound from top to bottom, while yet preserving Sennheiser's effortless quality of overall sound while adding power and authority to the last half octave that was missing from the 650 without painstaking research, trial and error."
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"More power to those that can -- I am simply not able to do so."
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"The HD800 has tremendous resolving power in this regard; never before have I been able to distinguish each of the seven members' voices so clearly."
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"I took me some time to get used to them and after a while I started to appreciate the qualities of the HD 800, especially after upgrading my system and implementing a smoother sounding amp and DAC with an efficient power supply unit."
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"Accurate in that it is insanely detailed and resolving and helps power the immensely open and wide soundstage that recreates everything in a 3D venue with laser positioning that just redefines what listening to headphones is all about."
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"To me, the HD800 is very much of a Chameleon, like the Stax SR-007 Omega, meaning that even though they are easily amped, they are extremely revealing of the power, source, cables, amp, etc."
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"When properly amped with an amp that has enough power and has a sound signature that will complement the HD800s, they will have the deepest bass you will hear (if the song is meant to have bass), wonderful instrument separation and soundstage, and beautiful highs without being sibilant or shrill."
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"Top grade materialsSpacious: more like wearing mini loudspeakers with plenty of room away from the earsExcellent imaging - instrument presentation soundstage is wider than HE 6 in most recordings, with caveatClear instrumental separation (not necessarily better than HE-6 but superb)Balanced, if you buy balanced cables separately, with easy pull out leads5-5Xk sound range, bit more mellow soundingless power hungry ampwise, easier to use on more ampsYou get your purchased's HD 800 frequency response chart from Sennheiser (should you want need it)HD-800 cons :Hard to state if any, except there is less treble roll off viz HE-6, which audiophiles find more comforting and realisticNot a fan of its striking looks, would prefer more normal looking phones!"
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Price

Price:
"You will experience music like never before and please don't let price stop you from enjoying good music."
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"Unfortunately, you may find yourself spending a lot of money upgrading the recordings you own (higher sampling rates, remastered, etc.)."
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"not only that the price is great but the second morgage i took out for these was worth it"
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"The downside is, of course, the eye-popping price tag."
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"All I can tell you is that for the 3x price you are getting the last 10% of what you are missing now."
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"This is absolutely unacceptable at this price level."
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")RATINGS:*Overall sound quality: 10 10*Three dimensionality: 9 10*Accuracy: 10 10*Distortion: 10 10*Definition detail: 10 10*Realism: 9 10*Treble proportionality: 9 10*Midrange proportionality: 10 10*Bass proportionality 9 10 (no model has ever gotten a 10 10)*Noise from cable movements: 10 10*Overall comfort: 10 10*Adjustment ease: 10 10*Temperature stability heat build up: 8 10 (4 10 if hot humid)*Softness of pads: 9 10*Adherence to head: 10 10 (you practically need the jaws-of-life to get them to fall off)*Value: 10 10*Inclusiveness: 4 10 (you need to buy a $99 Schiit Magni headphone amp for best sound at low volume -- but a more powerful amp for higher volumes -- and a $15 Grado mini adapter for use with portables)*Power hungriness: 3 10 (you WILL need to buy a headphone amp, but the $99 Schiit Magni or $169 Vali 2 are at least 90% as good as any at any price for these h-phones for most lower-volume uses, so do NOT fall into the price is proportional to quality trap set by blue collar know-nothings and manufacturer shills trolls by buying far costlier yet similar sounding equipment)*Prestige: 10 10*Resale value: 10 10 (if you buy these new for under $900, as I did, you can resell them for that on Ebay."
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"But the HD 800 is definitely a superior phone and I'd definitely get it if money wasn't an object."
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"So it is well worth the price as well."
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"I have tried half a dozen headphones in the $300 price range, and the difference between any of those and the HD 800s is quite clear."
_
"These are superb headphones well worth the high price."
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Quality

Quality:
"But I would rather have that than compromise on comfort and audio quality."
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"Almost definitely a manufacturing defect, and I'm disappointed it got through quality control."
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"Previously, I'd been disappointed by the quality of this recording."
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"I paid the extra to get these over some cheaper head phones largely because I'd heard they were super comfortable and my biggest gripe with closed ear head phones was never the sound quality, but the comfort, as I can rarely wear most closed ear head phones for more then 30 minutes with out my ears achin'g from being crushed against the side of my head."
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")RATINGS:*Overall sound quality: 10 10*Three dimensionality: 9 10*Accuracy: 10 10*Distortion: 10 10*Definition detail: 10 10*Realism: 9 10*Treble proportionality: 9 10*Midrange proportionality: 10 10*Bass proportionality 9 10 (no model has ever gotten a 10 10)*Noise from cable movements: 10 10*Overall comfort: 10 10*Adjustment ease: 10 10*Temperature stability heat build up: 8 10 (4 10 if hot humid)*Softness of pads: 9 10*Adherence to head: 10 10 (you practically need the jaws-of-life to get them to fall off)*Value: 10 10*Inclusiveness: 4 10 (you need to buy a $99 Schiit Magni headphone amp for best sound at low volume -- but a more powerful amp for higher volumes -- and a $15 Grado mini adapter for use with portables)*Power hungriness: 3 10 (you WILL need to buy a headphone amp, but the $99 Schiit Magni or $169 Vali 2 are at least 90% as good as any at any price for these h-phones for most lower-volume uses, so do NOT fall into the price is proportional to quality trap set by blue collar know-nothings and manufacturer shills trolls by buying far costlier yet similar sounding equipment)*Prestige: 10 10*Resale value: 10 10 (if you buy these new for under $900, as I did, you can resell them for that on Ebay."
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"SUPERIOR because of: accuracy, lack of distortion, imaging, three dimensionality, staging, detail clarity definition, frequency response, construction quality, attractiveness, comfort (except in hot humid conditions), value (I recently paid under $900 new!"
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"But I would rather have that than compromise on comfort and audio quality."
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"I was able to finally appreciate the huge high quality audio library available both with Spotify and Qobuz."
_

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Sound

Sound:
"I am very fussy about sound, having been a high-end stereo salesman and professional musician and singer."
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"Be your own judge and sound checker on the VIP stage or in studio by detecting every sound mistakes that could have been made."
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"The grado ps1000e are the ones that beats the HD800's by having more fun, less ultra pro error detecting, and better sound (but weigh 500g)."
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"They reproduce every microscopic sound in the way that you can detect an error which can be bad If you don't want to detect it."
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"Coincidentally my AKG and Oppo headphones do not sound as good with the Luxman as they do with my Oppo HA-1.With the right amp pairing these headphones are absolutely amazing."
_
"I got a set of Sennheiser HD600 headphones a long time ago, and it's sort of what led to the creation of Monkey's Audio because suddenly my MP3 files didn't sound so great."
_
"I paid the extra to get these over some cheaper head phones largely because I'd heard they were super comfortable and my biggest gripe with closed ear head phones was never the sound quality, but the comfort, as I can rarely wear most closed ear head phones for more then 30 minutes with out my ears achin'g from being crushed against the side of my head."
_
")RATINGS:*Overall sound quality: 10 10*Three dimensionality: 9 10*Accuracy: 10 10*Distortion: 10 10*Definition detail: 10 10*Realism: 9 10*Treble proportionality: 9 10*Midrange proportionality: 10 10*Bass proportionality 9 10 (no model has ever gotten a 10 10)*Noise from cable movements: 10 10*Overall comfort: 10 10*Adjustment ease: 10 10*Temperature stability heat build up: 8 10 (4 10 if hot humid)*Softness of pads: 9 10*Adherence to head: 10 10 (you practically need the jaws-of-life to get them to fall off)*Value: 10 10*Inclusiveness: 4 10 (you need to buy a $99 Schiit Magni headphone amp for best sound at low volume -- but a more powerful amp for higher volumes -- and a $15 Grado mini adapter for use with portables)*Power hungriness: 3 10 (you WILL need to buy a headphone amp, but the $99 Schiit Magni or $169 Vali 2 are at least 90% as good as any at any price for these h-phones for most lower-volume uses, so do NOT fall into the price is proportional to quality trap set by blue collar know-nothings and manufacturer shills trolls by buying far costlier yet similar sounding equipment)*Prestige: 10 10*Resale value: 10 10 (if you buy these new for under $900, as I did, you can resell them for that on Ebay."
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"As such, I am excited to have achieved among the best overall sound results (and convenience) by pairing the HD800's with, believe it or not, the $99 Magni 2 or $169 Vali 2 amp, once again proving that price is often not an indication of sound quality (as I first learned while working as a high-end stereo appliance salesman in my teens and early 20's.)"
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"But I amass beautiful, prestigious headphones as a hobby, from the underrated Grado SR80's all the way up to these gorgeous Sennheiser HD800's, simply the best sounding headphone ever made (which is why as a matter of principle I will not spend a cent over their $1,600 retail for any other model.)"
_

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